What You Can Still Learn From Seth Godin’s “Permission Marketing” Book [Marketing Book Review]


Seth Godin’s book revolves around the idea that, in today’s fast-living society, the only way you can fully get someone’s attention is by asking them to allow you to market your product. As the father of permission marketing, he became an innovator of seller-client relationships while starting a new trend in the way of seeing and doing marketing. Overall, Seth Godin remains one of the most influential marketers not only because of his expertise in the field but also because of his ability to find and share the best case studies for every aspect there is regarding marketing. Although the book was written in 1999, its ideas and the concept of permission-based marketing have yet to be fully implemented in daily marketing tactics. Here are some of the marketing facts we can still learn from today:

  1. Nobody cares about traditional marketing anymore. We are too busy to even notice online banner ads or other marketing and advertising materials. Marketing more frequently, although boring, is the solution. Repeating advertisements can bring more leads and higher conversion rates. Still, you won’t be able to remember more than 10% of them.
  2. New products and services are always difficult to launch since people are used to the existing ones. Don’t expect results from a business that centers itself around a product or service that exists already on the market. Innovation is now the key to success.
  3. The reason you see commercials on YouTube and even on websites is that marketers are adapting to the population segment that doesn’t watch TV anymore. This is the marketing world’s response to a generation that refuses to turn on the TV. What you can see while watching television is now on the Internet as well.
  4. People are actually interested in what you promote through permission marketing. It’s relevant to them, it’s more personal, and they are actively looking for that promotional material.
  5. Marketing is like a relationship. You have to get to know the person first. Analyze people before they become your customers in order to learn their demands.
  6. Always diversify your marketing methods.
  7. Interruption marketing is not dead yet.
  8. Having more clients doesn’t always mean a bigger profit.
  9. Advertise new products to your old clients.
  10. Focus on converting leads into clients, not on getting more leads. One hundred leads and fifty clients are better than two hundred leads and twenty clients.
  11. Present before selling.
  12. Gaining trust is difficult but essential.
  13. Banner ads have the potential to be fully customizable to an individual’s needs and interests in the future.
  14. Don’t trust that one piece of good content is enough to keep bringing new customers. Always update your website’s content!
  15. Experiment and test before it’s too late.
  16. Always offer rewards and incentives if you want to gain profit.

Overall book grade: 8/10

Read more of Seth Godin’s ideas on his Typepad blog (he is one of the few bloggers who don’t need visuals to create viral content) or check out some of his other books.